NZZ am Sonntag 2. May 2021
Generation Dialogue 50th St. Gallen Symposium – yesterday, today, tomorrow
PHOTOS: ST. GALLEN SYMPOSIUM
CH-8021 ZURICH • PHONE +41 44 258 16 98 • WWW.NZZONE.CH
Wir gratulieren dem St. Gallen Symposium zu 50 Jahren ... erfolgreichem internationalem und vor allem generationsübergreifendem Dialog. Angesichts der immensen globalen Herausforderungen sind gemeinsames Problemverständnis und neue, interdisziplinäre Lösungsansätze wichtig wie nie zuvor.
Sie erreichen uns persönlich unter Telefon 044 292 20 80 oder per E-Mail an firstname.lastname@example.org.
Publisher's supplement 50th St. Gallen Symposium
NZZ am Sonntag 2. May 2021
Wolfgang Schürer Founder of the St. Gallen Symposium
Peter Voser Chairman of the Board of the St. Gallen Foundation for International Studies
«The Future laboratory serves as the main thought, the urge to discover as motivation, inspiration as a compass»
«Together with the next generation, generate ideas and solutions for tomorrow’s world»
During our studies, the breakdowns of the post-war order became apparent. A younger generation demonstrated against the war in Vietnam, the invasion of Prague and against traditional academic methods that reflected social hierarchies. It was important to us to look for, and show, new ways. Today, climate change, societal social injustices and inequalities, as well as the dynamics of globalization and digitization manifest themselves with clear, but very uncertain perspectives. Interdependence is not primarily an abstract academic topic, but a global reality with practical consequences. Under the magnifying glass of the pandemic, it can no longer be denied that our mainstream approaches in political, societal and economic decision-making processes are insufficient to tackle such challenges integrally and sustainably. This realization makes the relevance of the dialogue between the generations clear - today more than ever. Dialogue is indispensable in developing the ability to reach a consensus, and to achieve consensus. Integral a pproaches are not guarantees, but a perspective that loses sight of common sense leads to a dead end. However, every situation is different.
We have seldom seen global challenges so sharply outlined as in recent times. For more than a year, we have been confronted with a pandemic that has been a great disruption for us all – especially the young. The geopolitical situation remains unstable and we face the huge task of confronting climate change. Questions central to our societies stand before us that will decide the fate of the world and the life of the next generation. In these unique and difficult times, it is even more important to cultivate earnest discussion between engaged young people and decision- makers in business, politics and science, as we are doing at the 50th St. Gallen Symposium. Together, through a many-faceted, open-spirited and internationally supported dialogue and through inspiring ideas, we aim for decisive contributions to allow better and more sustainable decisions for the future. This is at the heart of the St. Gallen Symposium in its 51st year. In a changing world, we dare not stand still. In line with the vision «Lead with the next generation in mind», the St. Gallen Symposium has established points for the future: new dialogue formats will be set up for the whole year and the next St. Gallen Symposium will be operating
Parallel to the establishment of the ISC St. Gallen Symposium, the autumn of 1969 in the USA was a turning point. What began as Apranet mutated in Geneva into the World Wide Web, today's Internet. This revolution gave rise to a virtual world inextricably linked with the real one; generations of scientists, students and users can change both worlds every day. However, back when it began, Professor Hans Ulrich and Dr. Walter Krieg developed the «St. Gallen Management Model». The timing of the founding accentuates the model's responsibility as a social system in a new dimension of networking. Meeting this responsibility for the future in both worlds is the aim of the intergenerational dialogue; it requires understanding both the opportunities and risks of change. The university offers the right forum for this discourse when it comes to cutting a swath through the jungle of data and information. The aim is to unite «Thought and Practice Leadership». The future laboratory serves as the main theme, the desire for discovery as motivation, and inspiration as a compass. As with every expedition in «terra incognita», there are surprises in store. The experience strengthens the participants for future stages. In dialogue, trust grows; it is on this that concrete actions are based. This is how opportunities can be realized.
lobally with hubs and Swiss consulates g worldwide – with much greater digital scope. With great pride, the St. Gallen Symposium reaches out beyond Switzerland and will welcome its international participants in the future on 12 locations around the worldwide, as well as on its virtual platform. We thank all the dedicated young people from more than 70 countries who seek out dialogue with leaders to question and challenge – and who also profit from these leaders’ invaluable experience. Our thanks also go out to the more than 140 inspiring speakers, as well as the companies and institutions who will accompany us as partners now and in the future. The world is in flux – and that creates chances. We must not allow further polarisation in world cultures and between generations. Our promise must be to offer all young people fair conditions and prospects for a good life. Let us use the chance, today and in the future, to forge ideas and solutions for the world of tomorrow – for and, especially, with the next generation.
Voices from regular guests at the St. Gallen Symposium «It is always impressive how close to the pulse of the times the St. Gallen Symposium is. The student organizing committee particularly succeeds in bringing together very interesting young people from all over the world who resolutely bring the character of a friendly or harmless debating club to the event. It is noticeable that the matter is discussed thoroughly and without compromise, but constructively. Often the little informal conversations end with a ‹Let's do something now!› I think that's worth supporting.»
Sibylle Mutschler Head of Trans formation of the specialty chemicals company Clariant
«Bringing entrepreneurs, high officials, and professors – as well as students – to one table for intensive discussions on topics of our still liberal society – that is fabulous. Hats off and keep it up!»
«We need new solutions for the world of tomorrow and we have to develop them together with the next generation. That is why I am enthusiastically involved in the St. Gallen Symposium every year.»
«I have already participated in the St. Gallen Symposium 23 times. I am particularly pleased to be there again this year, the 50th a nniversary. My first participation in 1997 inspired me so much that I have been a regular guest – and sponsor – ever since. Supporting the program in India remains a rewarding experience. The best proof of this: Thanks to the high quality of the event and the unique, generational character, this is the only business event that my wife is also happy to attend without reservation!»
«I've been taking part in the St. Gallen Symposium since 2011. The subjects dealt with every year are extremely topical. Above all, the exchange of views and intergenerational dialogue are very valuable. It is i mportant that we all work together to solve problems and build a better future for generations to come.»
«Generation Dialogue» A publisher's supplement of the NZZ in cooperation with the 50th St. Gallen Symposium.
Publisher's supplements are not produced by the editorial team, but by our service pro vider for journalistic storytell ing: NZZ Content Creation. Project management Content: Norman Bandi, Head of NZZ Content Creation
Thomas Schmidheiny Honorary Chairman of the building ma terials manufacturer LafargeHolcim
Katrin Eggenberger Member of the Academic Award Jury of the St. Gal len Symposium
Sushil K. Premchand Honorary Presi dent of the SwissIndian Chamber of Commerce
Simona Scarpaleggia Global CEO of EDGE Strategy and various advisory board mandates
Layout: Armin Apadana, Graphic Designer & Concepter Contact: NZZone, c/o NZZ AG, Falkenstrasse 11, 8021 Zurich www.nzzone.ch
Publisher's supplement 50th St. Gallen Symposium
NZZ am Sonntag 2. May 2021
The sparks have been igniting for 50 years about the up-and-coming talents Every year at the St. Gallen Symposium on the HSG campus, the «Leaders of Today» meet the «Leaders of Tomorrow», most recently around 1,000 participants from more than 60 nations. Here are the milestones in fast motion.
The St. Gallen Symposium is founded by five students from the University of St. Gallen (HSG): Wolfgang Schürer, Urs Schneider, Franz Karl Kriegler, Clemens Ernst Brenninkmeyer and Terje I. Wölner-Hanssen. Since then, it has been organised by the International Students’ Committee (ISC), a University of St. Gallen student initiative.
1970 The first St. Gallen Symposium - formerly known as the International Management Symposium or the ISC Symposium – takes place with 100 executives («Leaders of Today») and just as many students («Leaders of Tomorrow»).
1972 The world-famous study by the Club of Rome is presented on the occasion of the third St. Gallen Symposium. The non-profit organization founded in 1968 is committed to a sustainable future for mankind.
1974 The St. Gallen Foundation for Inter national Studies (SSIS) is established to ensure the continuity of the organisation. Previous managing directors: Gerard and Ursula Stoudman, as well as Wolfgang Schürer (1975 to 1993), Eugen von Keller (1995 to 1997), Andreas Kirchschläger (1997 to 2008), Philip Erzinger (2008 to 2017), Beat Ulrich (since 2018).
1979 The «Max Schmidheiny Freedom Prize» is awarded for the first time at the St. Gallen Symposium (until 2003).
1989 The St. Gallen Symposium is one of only three institutions in Switzerland with its own server. The «St. Gallen Wings of Excellence Award» is founded: one of the largest student essay competitions worldwide.
1993 The St. Gallen Symposium opens an office at Harvard University in the USA.
Two Harvard students are responsible for North American contacts and run the Harvard-St. Gallen International Business Club.
2002 The ISC organises the International Federalism Conference on behalf of the Federal Council.
2003 The ISC Club of Japan is founded to encourage the participation of Japanese visitors at the St. Gallen Symposium.
2010 The ISC organises an international conference on democracy and decen tralization under the auspices of the Swiss chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe.
Breaks are for networking.
Purpose is not a buzzword at the St. Gallen Symposium, but an attitude.
2012 To strengthen the St. Gallen Symposium in Asia, a separate office is opened in Singapore.
2019 The St. Gallen Symposium starts with a new corporate identity for the next 50 years.
2020 The St. Gallen Club of Mexico, initiated by former student participants, is founded.
SNB President Thomas Jordan (left) exchanging ideas with young talents.
Lived generation dialogue.
The first «Global Leadership Challenge» brings 90 young people together with managers to develop new approaches to solving global challenges. It is a joint initiative of the Alibaba Entrepreneurs Fund, the Oxford Character Project of the University of Oxford, and the St. Gallen Symposium.
2021 The St. Gallen Symposium celebrates its 50th anniversary. Due to the pandemic, the planned anniversary symposium had to be postponed from May 2020. Story: Elmar zur Bonsen
St. Gallen Symposium – the network The St. Gallen Symposium, founded in 1969, is the longest- existing platform for intergene rational dialogue in the world, with a focus is on economic, political and social issues, and developments. For 50 years, established executives and visionaries have been brought together with exceptional young talents in St. Gallen, at global locations and in digital formats. Together, they deal with the opportunities and dangers of our time and work on possible solutions. Around 1,000 people from more than 60 nations take part in the
PHOTOS: ST. GALLEN SYMPOSIUM
The campus of the University of St. Gallen (HSG) on the Rosenberg is the centre of the St. Gallen Symposium every May.
St. Gallen Symposium – Board of Trustees St. Gallen Symposium, including 600 executives from business, politics, academia and society, 300 young visionaries, selected through a global essay compe tition and the talent scouting network of the Organizing Com mittee, as well as 100 promising future leaders. The St. Gallen Symposium is funded by 400 international partners and the academic network includes more than 300 partner universities worldwide.
The nine-member Board of Trustees of the St. Gallen Foundation for International Studies consists of: • Peter Voser (Chairman), Chairman of the Board of Directors of the ABB Group, Zurich • Prof. Dr. Bernhard Ehrenzeller, Rector of the University of St. Gallen (HSG) • Bénédict G.F. Hentsch, Founder of Banque Bénédict Hentsch & Cie., Geneva • Prof. Dr. Ulrike Landfester, Professor of German Language and Literature
St. Gallen Symposium – live stream at the University of St. Gallen (HSG) • Dr. Christoph Loos, Chief Executive Officer of Hilti, Schaan (LIE) • Dr. Christian Mumenthaler, Group Chief Executive Officer of Swiss Re, Zurich • Dr. Ralph Schmitz-Dräger, Owner of Arcron, Zurich • Dr. Claudia Suessmuth Dyckerhoff, Board Member of F. Hoff mann-La Roche, Basel • Bettina Würth, Chairwoman of the Advisory Board of the Würth Group, K ünzelsau (GER)
The 50th St. Gallen Symposium will take place from May 5 to 7, 2021 under the topic of «Trust Matters». However, due to the tense epidemiological situation in Switzerland, the anniversary edition on the HSG campus will be held without physical partici pants. Physical participation is still possible at various embassy locations and at the hub in Singapore. So the St. Gallen Symposium can still celebrate its 50th birthday in the new global and sustainable form with hybrid elements. Studio setting in St. Gallen: The HSG campus will be retained as
the central broadcasting loca tion. Selected speakers will hold lively discussions and lead sessions in several studios at the University of St. Gallen. The participants can virtually connect to the newly created tool, participate interactively in the discussions and look forward to a new kind of experience. A series of public sessions will be streamed live on the St. Gallen Symposium website free of charge.
Publisher's supplement 50th St. Gallen Symposium
PHOTOS: ST. GALLEN SYMPOSIUM
NZZ am Sonntag 2. May 2021
Nadine Merz (*1998), Head of the Organisation Committee of the 50th St. Gallen Symposium.
Beat Ulrich (*1969), CEO of the St. Gallen Foundation for International Studies (SSIS).
A generation dialogue for the future Despite a joyful jubilee, the 50th St. Gallen Symposium wants to look forward, not back. The opinion exchanges between generations and questions of trust are more urgent than ever, as CEO Beat Ulrich and HSG student Nadine Merz, Head of the Organisation Committee, explain. This year’s St. Gallen Symposium focuses on what will happen tomorrow, not yesterday. That does not at all detract from the memorable Jubilee occasion – on the contrary, it encourages a short retrospective; without the past, there can be no future. When the conference was convened 51 years ago at the University of St. Gallen, the founders defined it as an answer to the international student unrest of 1968. They believed that the street protests should be offered a platform as a constructive dialogue between the younger generation and the policy makers from politics and business. Five decades later, the scenario repeats itself. Again, discontent manifests itself in ever wider circles in public and again the St. Gallen Symposium invites a diverse array of thinkers to a cross-gene rational debate about the real, underlying themes. With one major difference, as Beat Ulrich, CEO of the St. Gallen Foundation for International Studies (SSIS) and the St. Gallen Symposium clarifies: «The actual challenges present a completely different dimension as the problems then.»
The Trust Question The list of thorny dilemmas is certainly long. Not only is climate change a certain-
Driving forces Nadine Merz (*1998) completed her Bachelor’s degree in International Affairs at the University of St. Gallen and began a dual Master’s degree program there in 2021. Beat Ulrich (*1969) has been CEO of the St. Gallen Foundation for International Studies (SSIS) since 2017. Previously, he led the St. Gallen Location Promotion department. An HSG alumni, he has a degree in International Affairs and an Executive Master’s in European and International Business Law from St. Gallen University as well as an Execu tive Master’s in Business Administration in Digital Transformation from the Fachhochschule Graubünden (formerly HTW Chur).
ty, the gap between poor and rich expands exponentially and political systems drift further and further apart: generations are increasingly alienated from each other while trust in established institutions like business, politics, justice, media and science weakens. New fears emerge, unease grows and with it mistrust in many segments of the population. Now, exactly in this pandemic crisis and its handling we see trust splintering before our eyes, says HSG student Nadine Merz, Head of the Organisation Committee of the 50th St. Gallen Symposium. «Trust is an essential component – it allows us to live and work together.» «Trust Matters» – trust concerns: the main theme of the 50th St. Gallen Symposium could not be more appropriate, given the actual events unfolding around us. The rapid and drastic changes occurring from day to day present the organisation of involved students and the accompanying SSIS with significant re-thinking challenges. «Given the global challenges, already with the first lockdown, it was clear to us that the ‘familiar structures’ option was no longer a possibility», remembers Beat Ulrich on those disturbing, uncertain, suspenseful weeks that unleashed a major, cross-generational creativity surge. «If we wanted the St. Gallen Symposium to go on, there was only one possibility: we had to re-invent ourselves.» And that did not mean stepby-step, it meant everything at once, immediately. For Nadine Merz, it’s clear: «Without mutual trust in each other and what we are doing together, this Jubilee would never have been able to take place». Even though the official 50th was delayed by the corona crisis in the 51st year.
Symbiosis instead of Strife The thirty-plus members of the organisation team – all future and former HSG students (who put their studies on hold to bring the Symposium together) – viewed the challenge as a chance. They relied on their strength and visions, helped by the trust in the experience of their senior SSIS colleagues. «The unique thing about trust is that it is seen almost as an ‹advance›; one invests before knowing that expectations can truly be fulfilled.», re-
«If we wanted the St. Gallen Symposium to go on, there was only one possibility: we had to re-invent ourselves.»
marks Nadine Merz. As it relates to the actual rollout of the Symposium, this description is 100% accurate. «The uncertain situation worldwide requires a huge advance of trust; what seems to be certain today can already dissolve tomorrow.» Happily, the looming uncertainties seem to have increased the confidence in mutual trust. With good reason, says Nadine Merz. «The fact that we arranged ourselves and said we would explore all possibilities and try anything, even though we’re not sure of the outcome, elicited an incredibly positive response». For Nadine, honesty and transparency are the two pillars of trust and sure footing. «People can have very different opinions, but it is important to pay attention to what was said and what was agreed on.» Nadine feels that, particularly in terms of the cross-generation dialogues, young people feel that they are often not taken seriously by the older participants. «It requires, undoubtedly, time and mutual empathy to bring together experience and the dynamism of the younger generation in symbiosis and not have it end in clashes.»
More Globally Represented The dialogue between students and leaders initiated at the St. Gallen Symposium – between the generations – will not be limited to the ‹Cloister city›, but instead also take place digitally and worldwide. «The University of St. Gallen campus will remain the central location, where physical presentations and gatherings with participants will take place, whenever possible.», says Beat Ulrich. Additionally, two newly established hubs in North America (New York) and the far East (Singapore), as well as live streaming from ten Swiss embassies worldwide, including Hong Kong, Johannesburg, Mexico City and New Delhi. «Dialogues will be locally conducted and streamed globally – giving us flexibility, supporting the sustainability reckoning and underlining the importance of Switzerland as the main focus of international exchanges.» Not least, this wider focus focuses a still stronger international attention on the St. Gallen Symposium and the intergenerational dialogue.
In all, about 200 young men and omen from around the world will w gather together with established leaders to discuss vital business, political and social themes. This will include, in addition to the scheduled generational dialogues and trust topics, questions of the health system, responsible innovation or the legitimacy of governments. «Through the St. Gallen Symposium, we want not just to generate attention, but to work on solutions from young and old, that can then be implemented in the world»; a very expansive goal, explains Nadine Merz. To take part, the young participants can either qualify within the yearly «Global Essay Competition» or be recommended by their institutions – a network with over 300 universities and institutes of higher learning worldwide. The selection is then completed by the student organisation team. «All these young and talented women and men have an in credible engagement, passion for their chosen fields and a clear focus on finding solutions, in common», explains Beat Ulrich. And «In its new structure, the Jubilee edition is the St. Gallen Sym posium of the future.» Story: Flavian Cajacob
Organisation team The St. Gallen Symposium is annually organised by the International Students' Committee (ISC), an independent student initiative at the University of St. Gallen (HSG). For ten months, a team of approximately 30 students voluntarily engages in this challenging task. During the implemen tation, it is supported by around 450 student volunteers. In addition to designing and planning, the organising committee is especially involved with the development of the conceptual framework and content of the St. Gallen Symposium. The ISC decides on the key themes and fosters contacts with partners, donors and speakers.
Publisher's supplement 50th St. Gallen Symposium
NZZ am Sonntag 2. May 2021
PHOTOS: SOU FUJIMOTO ARCHITECTS, WWW.MIR.NO
Visualisation outside: HSG Learning Center as an experimental field for the University of St. Gallen.
Visualisation inside: Interaction and Co-Creation as focal points of the HSG Learning Center.
A vision for the School of Experience The HSG Learning Center is intended to be a place of thought and work that enables innovative ways of learning and interaction with students, teachers, and practitioners. With the new building, the University of St. Gallen (HSG) wants to enable a new quality of learning to prepare the next generation in the digital age as well as possible for their later professional activities. The HSG Learning Center is intended as an ecosystem for the further development of the HSG's learning and teaching culture.
The volatile world demands changeability Universities today are faced with the challenge of realigning themselves: Due to extensive technological and social change, our world is characterized by high volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity. It is more difficult to grasp and control. This has implications for learning content and forms of de livery. In times of upheaval and digitization, learning is not reduced to a phase of life, but rather represents a life-long task. With the HSG Learning Center, the University of St. Gallen is responding to this challenge and opening a new chapter in its more than onehundred-year h istory. In doing so, USG wants to better empower students to help shape the economy and society actively, courageously, and with motivation. Building on its holistic tradition in research and teaching, an incubator for new formats of critical thinking and creative design is to be created at the HSG Learning Center. It should develop into a forum for dialogue between students and lecturers, as well as «Thought and Practice Leaders». The focus is on the skills to think critically, design crea tively and to implement them in a practice-oriented manner. Educational goals that incorporate innate human abilities are difficult to translate into algorithms; they are d esigned to provide learners with appropriate skills in dealing with disruptive developments.
The «open grid» for the «open mind»
The architectural concept of the HSG Learning Center was designed by the Japanese architecture firm Sou Fujimoto Architects. Thanks to the grid structure – the «open grid» – the rooms can be adapted to current needs. The modular, interlinked building elements combine to form dynamic zones that offer space for adaptation, interpretation and combination: for the «open mind». After the building permit was granted in summer 2019, the ground-breaking ceremony for the HSG Learning Center followed in the same year. The construction work is now well advanced and the shell has already been completed. With the interior work, the building is taking on more shape every day and showing its flexible character. To fill the rooms with new forms of learning and teaching after the opening in spring 2022, the management team is currently working on a detailed operating concept.
Direction Ensures a Coherent Programme To jointly design the HSG Learning Center as an incubator, an attractive programme is required that ties in with existing purposes. In addition to flexible spatial configurability, the vision for the School of Experience thus has an unmistakable basic idea: A directorship should take responsibility for the curricular, extra curricular and informal levels of action for joint learning. This intendant work makes it possible to design the content of the HSG Learning Center in a coherent and strategy-congruent manner, to involve stakeholders in a participatory manner, and to build an independent community. This free space thus expands the traditional forms of display for university teaching through the possibility of prototypically redesigning joint learning. The aim is to create a place that is not only home to some of the HSG's outstanding curricular teaching formats, but also offers students and lecturers a home as a space for reflection and experimentation.
Up on the St. Gallen Rosenberg, the University of St. Gallen is building the future of learning and teaching. The lighthouse project, financed entirely from private donations to the HSG Foundation, will open its doors in 2022.
Ernst Risch Managing Director of the HSG Foundation
«From 2022, the HSG Learning Center will act as an incubator for the entire University of St. Gallen and beyond.»
It is also open to alumnae and alumni and other target groups as a meeting and exchange centre. The HSG Learning Center offers the University of St. Gallen the opportunity to further advance its independent positioning. It should become a genuine nucleus of innovation, reflection and co-creation, acting as a model for other universities around the world.
the HSG Learning Center will act as an incubator for the entire University of St. Gallen and beyond. It is characterized, above all ,by its versatility – spatially but also in its operation. As a School of Experience, it strengthens and complements the HSG in its core area.
Five Guiding Principles Point the Way
The HSG Learning Center is the HSG's largest fundraising facility and is fully privately financed, with total project costs of CHF 63 million. More than 700 donors – mostly alumnae and a lumni of the HSG – have, so far, contributed over CHF 58 million. All of you, as well as numerous other foundations and companies in the private sector, deserve great thanks and recognition for this unparalleled commitment.
Personal encounters and co-creation are the focuses of joint learning at the HSG Learning Center. Through working on practical and current challenges, students' learning is experience-oriented. The result is a School of Experience that promotes graduates’ future viability: • The HSG Learning Center is new terri• tory for everyone. Curiosity should act as a driver for the entrepreneurial spirit of innovation. • The sense of community means that • HSG graduates gain an awareness of accountable behaviour and are able to take responsibility for themselves and others as managers in business, the state and society. • Building bridges means creating interdisciplinary connections. The HSG Learning Center creates an integrative dialogue between generations and disciplines, as well as between science and practice. • The HSG Learning Center should also • be understood as a base camp: a place for informed dialogue between students, teachers and practitioners. Learning should be understood as a life-long process; the HSG Learning Center offers the ideal platform for implementation. • An experimental field – the HSG Learning Center is an independent place that serves as a laboratory to experiment together with open-ended results. Based on these five guiding principles, meaningful learning and educational experiences will be created. From 2022,
Financed entirely through donations
Story: Ernst Risch Scan the QR code and start your virtual tour: enter the HSG Learning Center already today.
HSG Foundation The aim of the HSG Foundation is to support the University of St. Gallen (HSG) in its development as one of the leading international business universi ties. It initiates and bundles funding to implement strategically important pro jects for the HSG, thus helping secure the excellence of research and teaching. It deliberately ties in with the HSG's donation tradition, which, thanks to significant donations from private sponsors, has been able to position itself as a leading business university. The HSG Foundation is a non-profit founda tion; Ernst Risch is Managing Director. hsg-stiftung.ch
NZZ am Sonntag 2. May 2021
Publisher's supplement 50th St. Gallen Symposium
«The collaboration has shaped my life in the truest sense of the word» PHOTOS: PD
Three former business students from the University of St. Gallen, currently executives at global corporations, tell why they were hired by the International Students’ Committee and still benefit from their commitment to the St. Gallen Symposium.
Name Birth year Place of birth Nationality(ies) Marital status Number of children Current function In position since Workplace ISC team no. From … to … Former task area
Matthias Halusa Country President, BASF Switzerland
Christoph Loos Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Hilti
Livia Höhener Directrice Générale France, Bühler
Matthias Halusa 1968 Schramberg (GER) German / Swiss married 2 daughters Country President, BASF Switzerland 2019 (with BASF since 2010) Basel 20 September 1989 to June 1990 Students and essay competition
Christoph Loos 1968 Mannheim (GER) German / Swiss married 2 sons, 1 daughter Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Hilti 2014 (with Hilti since 2001) Schaan (LIE) 22 September 1991 to June 1992 Transport field and marketing, south Germany
Livia Höhener 1989 Illinois (USA) Swiss single, in a partnership – Directrice Générale France, Bühler Group 2019 (with Bühler since 2011) Haguenau near Strasbourg (FRA) 39 and 40 September 2008 to June 2010 39: Relationship Manager Nordics & Management Participants’ Services; 40: Relationship Manager Norway & Head of Participants’ Services and Transportation
Why did you actively participate in the ISC then and suspend your HSG studies to organize a St. Gallen Symposium?
I came across the 20th ISC team through the so-called helper status during the 19th St. Gallen Symposium and my 2nd semester at the HSG. At that time, we were able to engage in this project while we were still studying. The atmosphere and the idea of getting well-known personalities from science, politics and business to participate in a cross-generational dialogue at the university fascinated me and I wanted to be there. The ISC already had a special aura back then and stood for team spirit and perfection. The passion and the fire of the team were literally tangible and the prospect of getting involved in a professional organization in addition to the academic training appealed to me. And I have never regretted it!
I participated in the 2nd semester as an ISC helper and found both the symposium and the student team impressive. I then applied for the organising committee. When I was on the ISC team, I actually never went to university, but I was able to catch up on the material on my own and pass the exams, so I didn’t lose any study time.
In my first year of study, I took part in the St. Gallen Symposium as a helper. This experience impressed me in several ways: The event was organised with enormous professionalism and fascinating attention to detail. Influential managers took the time to listen to students' concerns and discuss them on an equal footing, to look for solutions. The team spirit in the organizing committee was overwhelming. All these impressions convinced me to want to become part of it myself and to work for this purpose.
What is the «most special» experience you had during your ISC engagement?
In my case, this is very easy, because working at the ISC has literally shaped my life: I met my wife Barbara there – we even worked in the same office at times. She had just been hired by the Foundation for International Studies and was responsible for communication and press work. There were some overlaps with my area of responsibility, which had a lasting effect. We are one of the few «ISC couples» and now even an «ISC family», as our daughter was a member of the 47th ISC team.
In addition to visiting many impressive personalities when recruiting speakers, participants and sponsors, this was certainly also the direct collaboration with ISC founder Wolfgang Schürer, who took a lot of time for us students at the time and let us run through a tough course.
In the so-called market phase at the ISC, the aim is to organize as many appointments as possible with exciting market decision-makers to convince them to take part and make an active contribution. The first appointments are sometimes awkward and a little embarrassing due to the nervousness in the unfamiliar situation. At some point, there comes a moment when you understand that with a student’s enthusiasm and spirit of discovery, you can represent an equal interlocutor for experienced decision- makers. This was a key moment for me that opened the door to very exciting encounters and discussions.
To what extent did you benefit afterwards on your personal career path, or are you still benefitting?
I benefited from two things in particular. First of all, I understood and internalized the power a team brings where everyone looks for the others, thinks for themselves, is fully committed, and diversity is lived. At that time nobody spoke of diversity and inclusion, but that was what the ISC team was all about. And second, the ISC gave me a clear basic understanding of professionalism, which has helped me decisively on my professional path. Both experiences have shaped me significantly and were of inestimable value for my professional development.
Due to the intensive work on the team and great responsibility at a young age, I was regularly outside my comfort zone and that helped me grow as a person. In addition to much experiences in the art of working professionally, how to communicate, and how to sell an idea, I was also shaped by the experience of how much positive energy you can release when a team works well and works towards a common goal.
While working for the St. Gallen Symposium, I learned that, in many respects, more is possible than I thought; I learned to trust myself. This helps me in my life today; I continue to push my limits and to dare to take very challenging steps. This includes, for example, accepting my current position in 2019, which I approached with great respect – but judge today as exactly the right decision.
How do you maintain the inter generational dialogue today, or how do you now promote young talent?
I am currently heading an organization that, for historical reasons, has a relatively high average age. That is why generation change is a very topical issue; we are working on several initiatives to make it more attractive to young employees. The focus, based on the customer experience concept, is a talent experience approach that involves young people to a much greater extent in their own development, using modern digital tools for this purpose. I make talent development my personal concern, including putting together cross-generational teams and being ready to give young employees greater responsibility at an early stage.
In my role at Hilti, the subjects of people development and mentoring our successors and the next generation are very important to me. Since 2012, as a member of the ISC Board of Trustees, I am pleased to be able to support the younger generation in the continuation of the ISC idea.
Since graduating from the HSG, I have regularly stayed in contact with the students through various forums and partnerships. At the moment, there is also discussion about taking on coaching in a student program in cooperation with Bühler. We also have time abroad at our company as part of the apprenticeship training; I supported this program two years ago with the exchange of two trainee businesswomen. Interview: Norman Bandi
Publisher's supplement 50th St. Gallen Symposium
A key to corporate success
NZZ am Sonntag 2. May 2021
As a main partner of the St. Gallen Symposium, the Boston Consulting Group supports the conference with new ideas, expertise, and an extensive network. A study on «Trust in Organizations» was prepared as a basis for discussion for this year's work.
For many years, the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) has been associated with this traditional conference as a member of the St. Gallen Symposium sponsorship group. In 2020, BCG has become one of the main to be able to get even more involved. Daniel Kessler, Managing Partner of BCG Switzerland, explains this step towards more intensive cooperation: «We are won over by the idea of cross-generational, constructive dialogue because it fits perfectly with the values of our company.» And the slogan of the St. Gallen Symposium, «Lead with the Next Generation in Mind», corresponds to BCG's «Purpose»: «Unlock the Potential of Those Who Advance the World.»
Looking to the future, BCG is pursuing a long-term strategy as one of the main partners and intends to make a new contribution to this intergenerational dialogue every year and further develop the platform. «With the St. Gallen Sympo sium, for example, we no longer want to focus only on the three days in May, but also address the various stakeholder groups during the year,» Daniel Kessler outlines one of the ideas. There are already good suggestions as to how and with which formats this could be achieved. As the first result of the closer cooperation, BCG has presented the study called «Trust Matters Within Your Organization», a white paper. To this end, 150 young executives from the «Leaders of Tomorrow» community at the St. Gallen Symposium were questioned and the results supplemented with interviews with junior and senior executives on the topic. «We created this study because we really like the main topic of this year's event, ‹Trust Matters›,» explains Kessler. There is hardly a better topic for society in this time. BCG believes that trust within organizations is an essential part of modern collaboration. Entrepreneurial and social goals can only be achieved in a good working atmosphere.
A kind of sparring partner With the increased commitment, BCG aims to help bring today's executives together with the next generation to talk about the most important challenges facing society. Effective solutions to overcome them should be found together, says Kessler. «As a kind of sparring partner, we can contribute our broad expertise and our ideas to support the St. Gallen Symposium in identifying the main topics and the strategic direction.» BCG, together with other partners, helps to think ahead about existing formats and to develop new ones so that the event is really on top of current developments. In addition, according to Kessler, the new main partner will add more depth to relevant topics with analyses or studies and provide insight into experiences with customers all over the world. Much of the input comes from the Bruce Henderson Institute, the company's own think tank, which claims to «think along with relevant issues for our society». The current focus areas of BCG Switzerland «Lead in the New Reality», «Accelerate Digital», «Sustainability» or «Diversity, Equity & Inclusion» should also flow into the cooperation with the St. Gallen Symposium. «And of course, we support it with our international network of experts,» adds Kessler.
«We created this study because we really like the main topic of this year's event, ‹Trust Matters›.»
Culture of trust «We see that in ourselves and with our customers,» continues Kessler. In this context, BCG wanted to make a contribution to outline the topic and to create a basis for discussion for the St. Gallen Symposium; they hope that this will happen every year. One of the study’s main findings is that trust in working relationships is the key to effective leadership with a view to the next generation. Trust in organizations is important across generations, but is especially important for the younger workforce: millennials or members of Generation Z. Transparency, promotion, and a culture of trust increase their loyalty and commitment, while lack of it could be a main reason to leave the company.
Changes in trust relationships in light of corona Since the Covid-19 crisis, how has the importance / actual level of trust in the following relationships changed in your organisation?
Trust of managers in team members
Overall trust in the organisation’s senior leadership
Trust of team members in managers
Trust between team members (peers)
Trust between managers (peers)
20 SOURCES: ST. GALLEN SYMPOSIUM AND BCG SURVEY 2020
0 Actual change
Daniel Kessler, Managing Partner of BCG Switzerland. According to Kessler, managers must be aware that trust is very important for the next generation. But how can a culture of trust and an authentic, honest atmosphere be brought about in a company? For the Swiss boss at BCG, it is essential to be clear about the goals, strategy, and management principles. «Instead of rigid, narrow rules with control mechanisms, we recommend working with values and principles,» says Kessler. This makes it possible for managers to promote a culture of mutual trust and personal satisfaction, which has apositive effect on team cooperation across management levels, functions, and national borders and, ultimately. on the company's success.
More self-determination According to the white paper, the young generation, in contrast to those previous, places more value on self-determination and flexibility and less on a secure job and wages. «This is evidenced by the fact that there are fewer careers today that run linearly and one does not stay as long with the same employer,» explains Daniel Kessler. Private activities have also become more important. However, the young people now have more options, which starts with their training. This development has an impact on their managers. According to Kessler, they have to be different and more integrative nowadays. «It used to be important when someone could stand up and be decisive.» As a rule, what had to be done was determined from the top down. «We are now perceiving that many talented young workers want decentralized decision-making mechanisms so that they can get more involved in the discussions.» Today, taking into account the servant leadership approach, different leadership and motivational skills are needed. The study also examined the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on organizations and companies (see graphic). Basically, according to Kessler's statements, the coronavirus has not produced anything new, but has strengthened and accelerated existing developments and
trends. «In a time characterized by economic and health insecurity, trust came even more to the fore,» says Kessler. Companies with a strong culture of trust are more resilient and get through crises better. A climate of trust has a positive effect on the productivity of teams and individual employees even in difficult situations. Friction losses and political games would be reduced so that, according to Daniel Kessler, managers and teams can concentrate on the essentials. The disruptions emanating from Covid-19 also opened up opportunities for new thought patterns. Story: Michael Baumann
About the person Daniel Kessler (*1977) has worked with BCG for 18 years and has been Switzer land Head since 2015. In addition, the 44-year-old family father and HSG grad uate is in charge of the BCG «Financial Institutions» area in Switzerland and was global head of Wealth Management from 2012 to 2017. He is responsible for client contact here and Europe, as well as North America and Asia.
Boston Consulting Group BCG was grounded in 1963 and is a pioneer in business strategy questions. Today BCG works with leaders from business and culture together to meet challenges and seize chances. Thus, BCG delivers solutions through management consulting, technology and design, as well as corporate & digital ventures. BCG is represented in more than 50 countries and employs about 22,000 people worldwide; 360 of these are in their offices in Zurich and Geneva here in Switzerland und Genf (since 2011).
NZZ am Sonntag 2. May 2021
Publisher's supplement 50th St. Gallen Symposium
«It takes trust to hand over your assets to financial institutions» Channels, technologies and consulting approaches can change – but the core of a customer relationship is a long-term, trust-based cooperation, says Philipp Rickenbacher, CEO of Julius Baer. Because this is timeless, wealth management has a right to exist in the future. PHOTO: KEYSTONE/CHRISTIAN BEUTLER
Mr. Rickenbacher, for decades, Swiss banking has been synonymous with trust around the world. How much is this still true today? Philipp Rickenbacher: The aura persists, the motivation is different. Bank client confidentiality and discretion used to be the focus. Today, Swiss banking is valued worldwide – above all – for the quality of its service and the country's stability – and because we create added value for our customers over generations. Is banking even possible without trust? Banking is purely a business of trust: Money transactions in any form are only possible because we trust that the value and stable institutions behind it. When we invest, we expect to see a return in the future. A bank, on the other hand, is difficult to approach because, unlike the watch or car industry, for example, it does not manufacture any tangible product. It takes trust to hand over your wealth to a financial institution.
And yet there are always homemade financial scandals. Are the banks too little aware of the importance of trust? Yes, probably even more so than before. But mistakes can never be completely avoided. This applies to employees as well as management. Wrong strategic decisions can even lead to the collapse of a company. In addition, customers also make mistakes – sometimes even deliberately and with criminal energy. We are exposed to these dangers. In the end, you shouldn't forget that banking is always a risky business. The question is, therefore, how we deal with mistakes and what we learn from them. How much does the question of trust favour the upswing of new, alternative providers or new technologies such as Bitcoin? More than trust, it is about the appeal of the new that plays into the hands of such providers. New solutions look interesting and attractive. But it is worth knowing the cycles of such innovations. The initial euphoria is often followed by a setback before it becomes something meaningful. The question also arises as to whether something really new has been created, or whether income sour ces are just shifting. With free stock exchange trading, for example, the customer may end up paying with his or her data. The situation is different with cryptocurrencies, which create completely new opportunities and bypass
Philipp Rickenbacher (*1971), a speaker at the 50th St. Gallen Symposium, has been CEO of Julius Baer since September 2019. Prior to this, the qualified Biotech nologist with management training at Harvard Business School had already worked for ten years in various positions at the private bank. He made further career steps at McKinsey and the Swiss Bank Corporation.
in oil companies, they will not go out of business, but will continue to operate unchanged for as long as possible. They will stop renewing and pollute the en vironment for decades to come. It can therefore make perfect sense to invest in those oil companies that are changing, using innovative technologies, or opening up new business areas. It is difficult to explain this differentiation, but our role is to support our customers in making informed decisions.
As a traditional company, the established banks should enjoy a head start in confi dence. How do you deal with that? I am not sure if this is actually the case. Because of the quality of Swiss banks, perhaps more abroad than in Switzerland, reliability of financial institutions is taken for granted; But we must continue to keep earning our trust everywhere. But then it pays off. We feel this when customers recommend us around the world. It cannot be taken for granted. Scepticism about traditional banks has increased, especially since the financial crisis. There were moments in the financial crisis when the stability of the entire financial system was jeopardized. A lot has happened since then, and I can now say with a clear conscience that banks have never been as robust as they are today. In the past 13 years, a tremendous amount of effort has been made to improve stability, also to be ready for possible crises.
About the person
While costs are rising due to additional regulations and interest rates remain low, income opportunities are dwindling. How will you make money in the future? The classic balance sheet and trans action business is retained, albeit with smaller margins. In addition, fee models for consulting services have become increasingly popular in recent years. And we are expanding our services: It's not just about which SMI stock to invest in, but about comprehensive solutions – regardless of whether the customer is looking for access to liquidity, investments in private markets, arranging his estate, or getting a charitable project off the ground.
Philipp Rickenbacher, CEO of the Swiss asset manager Julius Baer. Our focus is not only on investments, but also on providing independent advice to families, transferring assets from one generation to the next and shaping the future in the broadest sense. Thanks to our broad customer network, we are in a privileged position here and we can still create a lot of value. In this way, wealth management will continue to have a right to exist in the future.
the intermediary. But if a customer has CHF 1 million and needs it to secure a standard of living in old age, they will hardly invest in Bitcoin alone. Custom-designed solutions are required – and banks have experience in this. Companies from outside the industry like Apple, which are now also active in the financial sector, enjoy a lot of trust among consumers. How do you react to that? Competition stimulates business; we have to deal with it and adapt. If we were to do the same thing today as we did 20 years ago, we would no longer exist. Value chains are constantly changing. So, I'm not afraid that the technology companies will make us obsolete. Rather, they will have to be careful not to become banks, as they would have to adapt their business models to the regulations in all countries where they are active. Being a bank has privileges, but it also has many consequences. On the other hand, cooperation between technology companies and the financial industry is interesting, as it enables a gain in efficiency. Both sides benefit from such things. Either way, banking is changing. Why will traditional wealth management still need it in the future? The channels, the technologies or the consulting approaches can change – but the core of a customer relationship is a long-term, trust-based cooperation. This is timeless. Nevertheless, we have to develop further together with our customers if we want to remain relevant.
«Being a bank has privileges, but it also has many consequences.»
How have the demands on wealth management changed with the younger generations? The change is ongoing – especially since life expectancy continues to rise and wealth is not immediately passed down to the 20-year-olds. Today, we work with several generations from different cultures around the world. To fully understand their needs, we have to be very close to the customers. Only thanks to personal and individual approaches can we translate existing offers into real customer benefit. What is the significance of sustainability in this? Sustainable investing is not a passing phenomenon. Today, we know that there is no need to compromise between returns and sustainability. The pandemic has also intensified the trend. We are noticing an increased demand in this regard, especially from the younger generation. However, you have to approach the issue carefully: It's not about feeling good, but about making really good decisions. For example, if you stop investing
How will the Swiss banking centre develop in the coming years? I am an optimist and firmly believe that the banking centre will continue to do well in the future. We have all the prerequisites for this: a great ecosystem, many banks and incredibly well-trained people. Switzerland offers great framework conditions, a secure legal framework, international networking and proven regulators. We can be pioneers. But we cannot rest and want to preserve everything. If we develop step by step, we can maintain our leading position. What role will Julius Baer play in this? With assets of over CHF 400 billion on a global scale under management, we are a leading wealth management company. We want to use this role for our cus tomers, shape the future with them, and further expand our position. We remain an important player in the international financial centre. Interview: Roberto Stefano
Julius Baer Julius Baer - a long-standing partner of the St. Gallen Symposium - is a leading Swiss wealth management group as of the end of 2020 with assets under management of CHF 434 billion. The private bank Julius Baer, founded in 1890, is its most important operating company. The group with its headquarters in Zurich is represented at more than 50 locations in over 20 countries.
Publisher's supplement 50th St. Gallen Symposium
NZZ am Sonntag 2. May 2021
«We are committed to transparency» By 2050, Glencore wants to be carbon neutral. With clearly defined measures and plans in the area of sustainability, as well as an intensive exchange with stakeholders, trust in the raw materials enterprise will be strengthened, says Anna Krutikov, Head of Sustainable Development at Glencore.
It is noticeable that Glencore is communi cating more with the public. Is this offi cially part of your strategy? We are committed to transparency. A part of that is also discussion with our stakeholders. On one side it is about highlighting our achievements and recognising the challenges that confront us. On the other side, we want to know and understand the needs of our stakeholders so that we can incorporate them in our work. What «trust» means for Glencore does not seem to have been helped by more dialogue up until now. In Switzerland, the campaign leading up to the ‹Corporate Responsibility I nitiative› polarized voters extremely strongly. We were more in ‹the eye of the hurricane› than other companies. That affected the public perception of us. How will you win trust back? We have adapted certain measures and are now putting these into force. These relate particularly to climate change, that we see as the greatest global challenge of our time. Together with our shareholders, we have developed a set of guidelines for our branch that should lead to a reduction of greenhouse gases. We also want to be carbon neutral in our total emissions by 2050 – until now, we are the only company in the mining sector with such a plan. Now, we must do everything we can to reach that goal; that is how we will strengthen trust in our enterprise. You have a «Strategy for a Sustainable Future» that you made public at the end of 2020. How will this unfold? We are working to reduce our CO2 footprint. In the industrial area, we can do this
The 50th St. Gallen Symposium’s motto is «Trust Matters». What does trust mean for a company like Glencore? Anna Krutikov: Trust is a process. As a business, we face enormous challenges today – mainly from climate change. No one can conquer such a challenge alone – collective solutions must be worked out. Constructive dialogue is thus very important, because it builds trust.
Anna Krutikov, Head of Sustainable Development at Glencore in Baar, canton Zug. by sinking our energy use and employing renewable energy sources, whether for trucks, smelting ovens, or in mines. We also considering new technology solutions that will reduce CO2. However, CO2 emissions that we cause directly are only a part of overall emissions. We are the only mining company adopting Scope-3 goals, that take the emissions into account that use of our products produce. What happens next? We will increase our investments in metals like nickel, copper, cobalt, and zinc, which are absolutely essential for energy and mobility changes. In addition, we will reduce our coal production. This cannot happen from one day to the next, but will be carried out in steps. By 2035, our goal is to reduce our overall emissions by 40%, and by 2050, to achieve net-zero. Because climate change-related measures call for renewable energy usage, coal dependence must also be reduced. Certainly, the demand for coal will sink. However, because of the growth in world population the worldwide demand for energy will rise further. Thus, even the international energy agencies believe
«By 2050, we want to be net-zero.»
that coal – under any climate-political scenario imaginable – will continue to play a roll. In absolute numbers, the reduction in demand will not be as great as expected.
In the future, Glencore plans to concentrate more on raw materials that will help enable a reduction in industry emissions. But obtaining these substances is also not exactly sustainable. We try to run our business as sustainably as possible. That goes for the CO2 emissions exactly as it does for other environmental factors and effects. Mining of raw materials causes emissions, no matter what metal is involved. When ever possible, we try to use renewable energy. In actuality, we obtain 13% of our energy from renewable sources, a percentage we want to increase. As far as by-products in water, in the air, or in the ground, we have already tried in past years to set standards and take measures to reduce environmental damage as much as possible. We also try to carefully monitor our «social footprints». We engage ourselves strongly to protect human rights and to foster the positive development of the communities and regions where we operate. In certain areas, for example the Democratic Republic of the Congo, there are huge challenges related to these efforts.
The human factor Every product development starts with people: their knowledge, skills, experience, and creativity. Values and inno vations created with this human capital are secured by intellectual property rights – for example by patent rights or knowhow protection. In addition to generous funding for basic research at our research institutions, intellectual property rights promote new developments. They protect the results of applied research from illegal access. Fair competition for ideas and protection against performance theft are key. If «free riders» could avail themselves of
Interview: Roberto Stefano
Glencore Glencore, located in Baar, canton Zug, is one of the most globally important raw material firms and has supported the St. Gallen Symposium for ten years. Anna Krutikov has been Head of Sustainable Development there since 2016; she will take part in a podium discussion at this year’s St. Gallen Symposium. The company’s director, Ivan Glasenberg, has already parti cipated in previous Symposiums; he will hand over CEO responsibility in July 2021, to Gary Nagle.
How actively does Glencore support research in new mining technology? Glencore Technology is a specialized unit within the group; it works on de veloping new technology and conducts research on improved processes. For example, in the meantime, our smelting process has been adapted by numerous other companies in our branch.
Patent rights and the protection of intellectual property are central to research and innovation. They secure and promote the performance of our economy, as two experts from the law firm Lenz & Staehelin explain. r equires trust-building legal framework conditions. But not only that: To dare to bring new things to life, you need self-confidence and the confidence to reap the successful fruits of your own work appropriately. Just: «Trust Matters.»
Instead of using new raw materials, can’t we obtain more of these from recycled materials? And what would such a solution mean for Glencore? We are the leading recycler of used electro materials and it is already an important area for us that will be even more significant in the future. However, recycled material is handled by most governments like other garbage, meaning that the barriers to entry in these markets are high. We often rely on «informal firms» to reclaim garbage – with environmental repercussions. In Malaysia or India, the problem is already recognised by the government.
In what way? These countries have complex systematic challenges, that one can only tackle on national or international levels. Let’s stay with our example of the Congo – there, small mines are important parts of the local economies. Although we do not have any products from small mines in our delivery chain, we help them to meet these systemic challenges by improving conditions even in small mines and trying to eradicate the roots of child labour. We also, therefore, work closely with the «Fair Cobalt Alliance» together.
Trust matters – based on effective laws The Covid-19 pandemic acts like a magnifying glass, relentlessly revealing the shortcomings and weaknesses in the community. But it also shows very clearly the importance of research, innovation, and the ability to develop products and bring them to market maturity for society. Who would have expected, a year ago, that the most extensive vaccination program in history would be available as early as 2021? Without tremendous intellectual and financial contributions, the pharmaceutical industry would not have been able to develop effective vaccines and new types of self-tests within a relatively short period of time. The switch to CO2-neutral economic processes will also only succeed with the help of enormous developments. Many of these services are provided by young companies; the Zurich-based ETH startup Climeworks is probably the most prominent example. This ability to innovate
Can the entire industry become more sus tainable? It must. We know that more metal will be required in the future. Copper, nickel, cobalt or zine are pillars of sustainable business. Previous production of these raw materials could never meet the increasing demand. Another factor: deposits of these materials are very difficult to reach, whether for political reasons or because they exist in geographically or environmentally delicate regions. All the more reason that we must work closely together with our stakeholders to find the most sustainable ways possible to obtain raw materials.
Jürg Simon (left) and Martin Burkhardt, Partners at Lenz & Staehelin.
ports is around 90%, the share of employees in these sectors around 35%. Our economy, which is integrated into global value chains, is, however, also susceptible to abuse, product piracy and counterfeiting. The latest OECD study shows that Swiss rights holders lose around CHF 4.5 billion in sales every year through counterfeiting, pirated copies, and other Situation in Europe legal violations. That is around 2% of exThe general rule, on which our know ports with original Swiss products and ledge and innovation-based economic services. This corresponds to a loss of system is largely based, immaterial around CHF 160 million in tax revenue values and rights, applies. The latest and a loss of around 10,000 jobs in the European studies (European Patent manufacturing industry. This is actually Office, Office of the European Union for completely illegal. It is therefore imporIntellectual Property, etc.) show that the tant that we develop legally effective so-called intellectual property law- solutions to strengthen confidence in intensive industries in European coun- the enforcement of intellectual property tries contribute around 40% to the gross rights. Just: «Trust Matters.» domestic product. The share of these industries in European imports and ex- Story: Jürg Simon and Martin Burkhardt r esearch and development services without charge, it is doubtful that these would be provided to the same extent. Government orders or public procurement alone would not be able to achieve the same research and development performance. And this performance is crucial for dynamic economic growth and a high standard of living.
Lenz & Staehelin Lenz & Staehelin – a long-term partner of the St. Gallen Symposium – emerged in 1991 from the merger of the Staehelin law firm founded by Conrad Staehelin in Zurich in 1917 and the law firm founded by Raoul Lenz in 1951 in Geneva. Today Lenz & Staehelin has around 200 lawyers at its locations in Zurich, Geneva and Lausanne. The law firm operates primarily in the field of business law. The authors: Jürg Simon, Prof. Dr. iur., Attorney at Law and Executive M.B.L. HSG, has been a partner at Lenz & Staehelin since 2005; Martin Burkhardt, Dr. iur., Attorney at Law, LL.M., has been a partner at Lenz & Staehelin since 2000. Both are experts in intellec tual property law and procedural law.
Publisher's supplement 50th St. Gallen Symposium
«It's about more than acceptance, it's about enthusiasm» Peter Terwiesch, President of Process Automation business area and Member of the Group Executive Committee of ABB, talks about the first robots in mines, technological innovations in general, committed young talent in particular - and about why technology has never been so exciting. Mr. Terwiesch, you graduated as an electrical engineer more than 30 years ago, today you are part of the ABB group management. How has trust in technology changed in general over the past few decades? Peter Terwiesch: I wouldn't say that there was more trust in technology in past years than today - or vice versa. As far as society as a whole is concerned, skepticism and confidence have always been roughly in balance. I grew up in an industrial region and saw how robots found their way into production in the 1980s. Back then, people saw robots primarily as job killers - today they take it for granted that they perform tasks that are too monotonous, too dirty, or too dangerous for humans. It began in the automotive industry and now extends to mines, where automation helps make underground work safer and more productive. Nevertheless, in many mines there was soon a shift in the shaft. What I want to say explicitly with this example is that technology should not replace people, but rather support them in making better use of their abilities. We call this «augmenting human potential».
ABB Group The ABB Group, with headquarters in Zurich and around 105,000 employees in more than 100 countries worldwide, is one of the long-standing main partners of the St. Gallen Symposium. Peter Voser, Chairman of the Board of Direc tors of the global technology company since 2015, has been President of the St. Gallen Foundation for International Studies since 2013 and, in this honorary capacity, he is also Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the St. Gallen Symposium. In addition to Peter Voser, Peter Terwiesch, Member of the Group Executive Committee of ABB, will be on the virtual stage of the anniversary edition at the University of St. Gallen (HSG) and take part in a panel discussion on the topic of «A New Social and Generational Contract - Responsible Innovation & Technology».
Humans leave the dangerous or routine work to technology and concentrate on thinking, planning, or preparing. All technological innovations in the indus trial sector are ultimately there to in crease safety, productivity, and quality and, at the same time, to reduce the use of resources. That is the technical level. What contri bution can technology make to the inter generational dialogue per se, as it stands as a focus of the St. Gallen Symposium? Technology can make a very direct contribution. Let's take the topic of sustainability, which probably plays a very central role in the intergenerational dialogue: Many products and solutions that we develop as a global technology company don't just disappear within two years - no, they should be in use for 20 or 30 years. The life cycle discussion is very important to us and our customers. We are clear: What we create today will have a significant impact on the living conditions of the next generation and the generation after that. Do you have a practical example of this? Imagine a paper mill. It has been operated for many decades and is relatively resource-intensive. In terms of sustain ability, it is now a matter of implementing solutions that enable cycles of generation and recycling. The use of external resources is reduced, for example through closed water cycles and the use of paper recycling, without reducing competitiveness - on the contrary. Or shipping: Suddenly, in the face of a disruption at sea, expertise is required, but the closest specialist is hundreds of miles away from the physical problem. Thanks to «Collaborative Operations», it is possible to link the perceptions and options for team action on site in real time with the experience and tools of an expert elsewhere in the world. Of course, this also works on land and in other industries. This means? Whether paper mills, shipping, or mechanical engineering: We connect systems and people, combine algorithms and experience; complex situations can be efficiently mastered in interaction, which in turn has an impact on productivity and safety, but also on ecology and
NZZ am Sonntag 2. May 2021
Peter Terwiesch, President of Process Automation business area and Member of the Group Executive Committee of ABB.
sustainability. The corona pandemic in particular shows that, with the right technology, we can do a variety of tasks without having to travel long distances. Bright minds are required to develop such solutions. How do you recruit people like this as a Swiss company? It all centers around the values that you want to convey as a company, the much-cited «purpose». The younger generation is particularly strongly f ixated on the purpose and meaningfulness of what they do. I can remember times when I was asked - more casually than with real interest – «What are you doing at ABB?» - Today the energy transition and Industry 4.0 are no longer empty words for most people at our levels. Sustainability and the transformation of entire industries are relevant topics that young professionals can actively help shape. The field is wide and the con ditions are attractive. And then there is the fascination and passion for technology, which in my opinion have little to do with age. What do you mean? One acquires experience little by little, curiosity can be retained. I struggle when skills or affinities are explicitly attributed to this or that generation, especially when it comes to technology or digitization. In any case, in daily professional life, I experience again and again that the best solutions are not developed by homogeneously composed teams, but rather by mixed teams. This applies to the sexes as well as to age. The crucial points are ultimately the individual horizon of experience and the dialogue that takes place between the various groups and generations - the interest, the enthusiasm, the will to create. Among other things, ABB appears as the title sponsor of Formula E. What is the main factor here: the will to design or the marketing of your own name? If you reduce our commitment to just these two aspects, then you will not do justice to the scope. Of course we mark presence with the Formula E and of course we want to advance the technology. Of great importance, however, is the possibility of creating a fascination for modern technologies in broad sections of the
«We are clear: What we create today will have a significant impact on the living conditions of the next generation and the generation after that.»
financially unable to start or continue their studies. There is no obligation to join us later. For us and me personally, it is more about igniting the spark among the young for engineering, technology and the challenges of the future. As mentioned at the beginning, you can look back on almost 30 professional years. In the face of this, sparks hardly fly any more: What about the inner fire? What are you saying? (laughs). I am still passionate about my subject and my work, even after so many years! As an engineer and manager, I can say that technology and dealing with it have always been exciting - but never as exciting as it is today. The last few months in particular have challenged us incredibly, but also brought a lot of creativity to light. And to briefly touch on the topic of «Trust Matters», which was held high at the St. Gallen Symposium: We have de liberately chosen the path of greater decentralization of decisions for ABB. This is only possible through trust and that has not only proven itself in the corona pandemic - it has even exceeded our expectations by far. Interview: Flavian Cajacob
opulation and thus also promoting trust p in them. Electric racing is also an inspiration, especially in the next generation. Car races that «electrify», so to speak ... ... you said it. Perhaps after such a race, one elementary school pupil will really consider whether he or she should actually book a window seat in math. If we can open our eyes here and there to what is actually possible with our commitment, then we have already achieved a great deal. In short, they are working away at technology acceptance. It's about more than acceptance, it's about enthusiasm. It is in the nature of things that, as a technology company, we depend on committed and enthusiastic young talent. Accordingly, we also pay great attention to training. Not just in Switzerland, but worldwide. The ABB Jürgen Dormann Foundation also gives us the opportunity to award scholarships to talented and capable students who are
About the person Peter Terwiesch (*1966) has been wor king for the ABB Group based in Zurich for 27 years, since 2015 as President of Process Automation business area and Member of the Group Executive Committee of ABB. A dual citizen of Switzerland and Germany, he studied electrical engineering at the University of Karlsruhe with a focus on control engineering and wrote his diploma thesis on model predictive control at the École Nationale Supérieure de Physique in Strasbourg in 1991. With an inter disciplinary work on the non-linear optimization of batch processes with model uncertainties, Peter Terwiesch received his PhD in 1994 at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich. sc. techn. In 2000/01, he com pleted the General Manager Program at Harvard Business School in Boston.
Publisher's supplement 50th St. Gallen Symposium
«Startups shouldn’t worry about contact with lawyers» Like the St. Gallen Symposium, Schellenberg Wittmer relies on the dialogue between the generations. Young entrepreneurs, among others, benefit from this, says Pascal Hubli, partner at the commercial law firm with offices in Zurich, Geneva and Singapore. Schellenberg Wittmer has been a partner of the St. Gallen Symposium for several years. What is it about this event that fascinates you? Pascal Hubli: On one hand, there are event topics that are surprising and very topical. They stimulate thought and are relevant - now as well as for the future. On the other hand, we are enthusiastic about the dialogue between the gene rations stimulated by the St. Gallen Symposium. Students, future execu tives and established personalities from a wide variety of industries will perform at the event. If we want to solve current global problems, we need such a dialogue.
«As soon as you realize that you are getting stuck with legal issues, you should call in a lawyer.»
Keyword promotion of young talent: How much responsibility do the younger employees at Schellenberg Wittmer have? We are trying to break with traditional company structures; even young people can fill important positions in our law firm. And even during internships, our employees have the opportunity to actively participate in cases. We are convinced that diversity is needed in all areas, including age. This is the only way to get new ideas and other perspectives that are crucial for finding a solution. Among other things, you advise startups on legal issues. What are their concerns? It can be anything: from simple inquiries such as setting up a company to financing issues to more complex tax and labor law topics, or employee participation in the startup. Later, legal problems with products or regulations come up.
Which of these aspects also apply to Schel lenberg Wittmer? We also approach the search for a solution from different perspectives for clients. Dialogue and cooperation are very important to us - between industry experts, the sexes and also between generations. Many legal questions can no longer be answered single-handedly today. Depending on complexity, several specialists from different departments work on a topic. At Schellenberg Wittmer, we have the advantage of being represented by over 150 experts from 18 different specialist areas, which brings together a lot of knowledge.
NZZ am Sonntag 2. May 2021
Pascal Hubli, Partner at Schellenberg Wittmer.
It is worthwhile to get help early on and also to talk to friends and acquaintances. Using a lawyer from day one is useful only in isolated cases. Some times, however, there are situations where many problems could have been avoided if legal advice had been obtained earlier. As soon as you realize that you are getting stuck with legal issues, you should call in a lawyer. As a rule, young companies have a good sense for this. Can startups even afford your services? In fact, it can be difficult in the early stages. That's why lawyers have become flexible and creative. They have developed alternative remuneration arrangements affordable for startups. It is best to contact the lawyer and discuss your concerns, then you can see very quickly what a cooperation will cost.
How have the legal framework for star tups changed in recent years? On the one hand, regulations are more dense today than in the past, which can sometimes make it more difficult to set up a company. On the other hand, the startup scene offers a lot of capital and help for self-help.
What advantage do startups have when they turn to a large, international law firm? The main advantage is broad expertise. If I need advice from an expert for a client, I can get it quickly from within the firm. Our international network, on the other hand, is the right idea if a company wants to be globally active. Then we can make the right contacts on site.
When is it worth consulting a lawyer?
Finally, what tips do you have for startups?
Don’t be discouraged by difficult legal issues and consult a lawyer sooner – better than finding out later that it was the wrong way to go. And the most important tip: Startups don't need to be afraid of contacting lawyers; just give them a call. Interview: Roberto Stefano
Schellenberg Wittmer Schellenberg Wittmer - a long-standing partner of the St. Gallen Symposium - is a leading Swiss commercial law firm with more than 150 lawyers in Zurich and Geneva and an office in Singapore. The law firm founded 20 years ago takes care of all legal matters such as trans actions, advice and processes. The expert: Pascal Hubli (*1979), LL.M., is a partner at Schellenberg Wittmer and a member of the Corporate / Mergers & Acquisitions practice group. He is also a member of the firm's Management Committee. Pascal Hubli focuses on M&A and capital market transactions, public takeover law, corporate restruc turing and general corporate, contract and stock exchange law. He is part of the team at Schellenberg Wittmer that advises startups.
The agricultural sector as trailblazer in a sustainable world This observation seems even more true today than ever; the agriculture sector is affected like no other by the results of climate change. More and more often, farmers’ subsistence and the global food chain is threatened by flooding, drought, heat waves, storms, or early frosts. Europe is particularly hard it. According to the European Environment Agency, the harvest of wheat, corn and sugar beets could sink by up to 50% by the year 2050. Thus, as the authors of the study emphasise, the adjustment and gearing up of the agricultural sector to prepare for climate change must be a first priority. An optimistic note: the global agricultural sector has always known that it is in the position to handle steps forward and new industry challenges. The world today is producing 150% more food than in 1960 with only 13% more land – and that, although the spray rates of pesticides, thanks to safer and effective use, has gone down by 95%.
Agriculture’s key role
Digital technologies and artificial intelligence can help achieve a regenerative agriculture that functions despite climate change and produce an even richer food selection. When the agricultural sector is going well, we are all doing well. So meant G eorge Washington, first President of
the USA, when he said: «One can do no greater service for a country than an improvement of its agriculture.»
By 2050, more than nine billion people will be living on earth. Thus, stronger and more useful food crops - cultivated in the most environmentally way possible – that are both nutritionally valuable and affordable will be tremendously important. Global agriculture will not only be a part of this, it will thanks to progressive digitalisation and
a more sustainable, regeneration-based agriculture - play a key role in realising a positive future. Already now, farmers are using data-intensive tools to analyse their farm operations. With sophisticated algorithms, they can already exactly decide which seed type to use where, how deeply it should be sown or when preventative measures against disease or pests should be considered. This can make the difference between success and failure for a harvest. Parallel to these developments, progress in sensor technology and in digital imaging aid in keeping chemical sprays highly precise and able to differentiate between individual parts of each field. Automatic and remotely operated spraying machines are also being optimized. These spray weeds with absolute precision with tiny doses of herbicides. Analysis showed that use of herbicides can be reduced by more than 90% with this methodology. Not least, the most modern farm management systems enable continuous retraceability of whole harvests. In this way, agriculture can appeal to targeted users who want to buy only from farmers who employ a responsible approach with as few emissions as possible.
Food for all Even when these developments are just beginning, it can already be said: enabling farmers and landowners the ability
to use the most modern technology and artificial intelligence will be decisive in helping make food production more sustainable, improve ground health and aid in keeping the effects of climate change as low as possible. As the most digitally networked agricultural technology company in the world, the Syngenta Group will support and promote this development towards regenerative agriculture and - in the spirit of George Washington - ensure that enough good and healthy food can be grown for everyone. This guest article was provided by the Syngenta Group.
Syngenta Group The Syngenta Group, located in Basel, is now a main partner for the St. Gallen Symposium. As part of this cooperation, the agricultural technology firm com mits itself to dialogue with current and future progressive thinkers from around the world. This relates to core questions like improvement of the ground and earth through agricultural technology, improvements in biodiversity, and a clear mandate for management of cli mate change. The Syngenta Group has set its goals: sustainable, high quality, affordable food available for all.
NZZ am Sonntag 2. May 2021
Publisher's supplement 50th St. Gallen Symposium
Thinktank with tradition PHOTOS: PD
Innovative projects and new ideas have found fertile soil in St. Gallen for centuries. Anyone who wants to get a head start on impulses for the future will find great framework in the city and canton to promote dialogue between the generations. is perceptive, takes up key questions, and gives everyone the space they need to exchange ideas, new thoughts and new valuable inputs arise.» This is why the St. Gallen Symposium has established itself as an important intergenerational dialogue.
Networking and development
Host region St. Gallen. As early as the Middle Ages, the St. Gallen Abbey Library was the center of intellectual exchange, research and teaching, and innovation. Around the middle of the 8th century, the monastic community began to steadily expand the so-called scrip torium, which today comprises more than 2,100 manuscripts. As a result, the collection became the basis for the work of artists, writers and scholars from across Europe. These included the Carolingian poet and librarian Notker Balbulus and the chronicler Ekkehart IV, who headed the renowned St. Gallen monastery school until his death around 1057.
Growing startup environment This innovative spirit in St.Gallen can be felt well into the 21st century. The city and canton offer research and teaching professionals, young entrepreneurs and startups a dynamic ecosystem to develop and implement visions. Founders with clever business ideas benefit from the Institute for Young Enterprises (IFJ), the Young Entrepreneur Center (JUZ), or the S tartfeld association. The startup environment in St.Gallen is one of the fastest-growing in Switzerland: before the o utbreak of the pandemic, the number of startups was around 2,300 in 2019. This means that 11% more people bravely took the step into self-employment than in the pre vious year. This tendency continued in Covid-19-influenced 2020. The canton provides companies with information on funding programs and technological competencies and enables access to regional, national and inter national research, and development networks. New technology and cooperation projects are aided by experts who also support companies in acquiring basic knowledge. «Good locations for companies and a wide range of leisure activities make it even more attractive. We are committed - also in association with the neighboring cantons - to the active development and positioning of eastern Switzerland as a workplace location, including the Innovation Park East,» says Government Councilor Beat Tinner, Head of the Department of Economics of the Canton of St. Gallen.
«Innovationspark Ost» At the end of April, the Federal Council added the «Innovationspark Ost» to the
Beat Tinner Government Councilor St. Gallen
«Our goal is a canton that sets the tone and where diversity is lived - place where opportunities are recognized and actively used.»
Switzerland Innovation network. This means that business and science can be networked even more closely and innovations can be more strongly promoted. On the Lerchenfeld campus, the former Zollikofer area right next to Empa St. Gallen, the innovation park offers a high-quality development, laboratory, and work infrastructure that research teams from companies and scientific institutions can use for joint innovation projects. Thanks to the flexible space available on campus, companies can set up attractive workplaces directly on site. The «Innovationspark Ost» is a generation project from Eastern Switzerland; with a focus on health, digitization and the MEM industry (machine, electrical and metal industry), it focuses on core competencies in the eastern Swiss economy and institutions. On the research side, Empa St. Gallen and the St. Gallen Cantonal Hospital are involved in the «Health and Medical Technology» subject area. In the «MEM Industry» subject area, research is provided by the OST Eastern Switzerland Universities of Applied Sciences and the RhySearch research institute in Buchs. The University of St. Gallen (HSG) contributes its scientific competence in the development of new services, processes and business models. «Thanks to its national and international presence as a competence center for health and MEM industries, the ‹Innovationspark Ost› will encourage companies to settle in eastern Switzerland. It also serves as a talent pool for students and trainees,» adds Tinner.
Global radiance Maria Pappa Mayor of the city of St. Gallen
«As a livable, cosmopolitan, ecological and innovative city, it is the economic, cultural and social center of eastern Switzerland.»
The city and canton have excellent educational institutions: First, the University of St. Gallen (HSG), which enjoys an international reputation as a business management school. Together with the interdisciplinary ETH Research Institute for Materials Science and Technology, Empa St. Gallen, as well as the OST - Eastern Switzerland Universities of Applied Sciences and the Cantonal Hospital St. Gallen, the region is a hotspot for research and education. The new «School of Medicine» (Joint Medical Master's degree from the HSG and the University of Zurich) and the cantonal IT education offensive with the new «Institute of
Computer Science» at the University of St. Gallen provide further impetus. Since 1970 ,the HSG has hosted the St. Gallen Symposium, the world's leading initiative for intergenerational debates on economic, political and social developments. «The St. Gallen Sympo sium brings decision-makers to the city and ensures presence in the inter national media. All of this helps position St. Gallen as an attractive location for education, business, work and tourism,» says Economics Director Beat Tinner. In normal years, for example, overnight stays add value as well. The Mayor of the city of St. Gallen, Maria Pappa, also underlines the p ositive influence that the event has on the image of the city and canton. Due to the corona-related virtual implementation of the conference this year, St. Gallen is also receiving unique, global media attention. «Ultimately, however, it is not the added value or the image that is central to such an event, but the new ideas and thoughts that are possible from such a dialogue,» emphasizes Pappa. The initiative's recipe for success is very simple: «Solution-oriented, constructive con versation between generations is worth listening to, because established exe cutives know that an innovative future lies ahead. And students from all over the world know that experienced leaders stand in front of them. If the conver sation is bolstered by good moderation,
Both the city and the canton offer financial support for the St. Gallen Symposium, which, as a non-profit organization, relies on external contributions. «With our commitment, we want to contribute to longterm success, offer optimal conditions as a host region, and position ourselves as an innovative canton,» says Tinner. And Pappa adds: «It's about three central elements: Networking - being noticed being on the cutting edge. Today, national and international networking is an important element for the further development of a region and the city of St. Gallen was globally networked and committed from an early stage. With re sident, globally active companies and events like the St. Gallen Symposium, it is not only perceived as a competent and inspiring location for companies, specialists and major events, but can also benefit from experience and knowledge and has its finger on the pulse.» And what future visions are the city and canton pursuing? Beat Tinner says: «Our goal is a canton that sets the tone and where diversity is lived - place w here opportunities are recognized and actively used. Because people are more mobile today and are not limited by c antonal borders, we want to strengthen cooperation with international and inter-cantonal bodies and optimize the transport infrastructure at national level and become more attractive in cross- border traffic.» It is important to use the resources of the canton of St. Gallen more specifically than before, meaning that one wants to further strengthen the educational location and promote innovation and research. Maria Pappa explains that the city of St. Gallen is based on Vision 2030: «As a livable, cosmopolitan, ecological and innovative city, it is the economic, cultural and social center of eastern Switzerland.» As a business location with around 83,000 employees, the focus is primarily on value-adding entrepreneurship centering on future-oriented industries such as ICT and health. Story: Denise Weisflog
Scan the QR code and take off on a flight: like this you can discover the city and canton of St. Gallen online.
Economy of canton and city in figures St. Gallen
Total area Population
1951 km2 510 734
39,4 km2 79 990
Jobs / workplaces • Industry and commerce • Service sector
293 200 90 200 203 000
83 411 32 014 51 397
38 662 4 117 6 690 27 855
7 166 66 795 6 305
Number of establishments • Agriculture and forestry • Industry and commerce • Service sector Official website SOURCES: STATISTICAL OFFICE FOR THE CANTON OF ST.GALLEN, CITY OF ST. GALLEN
DANKE! Ein grosser Dank an:
alle aktuellen Partner, alle ehemaligen Partner, das diejährige International Students’ Committee (ISC), alle ehemaligen ISC-Mitglieder, Freunde, Bekannte und Unterstützer aller Art, die das Symposium seit 50 Jahren ermöglichen!
Partner des St. Gallen Symposiums
Ein besonderer Dank geht an unsere Unterstützer dieser Jubiläumsbeilage: